Health & Habits
5 Reasons We Should Be Taking Creatine Daily
Posted November 8, 2021
We’ve discussed what the best form of creatine to take is here, and what creatine “loading” is here. In this post, we want to address the 5 reasons we should be taking creatine daily.
Research on creatine suggests that it does much more than help us build muscle and strength. While it can undoubtedly help us set PRs in the gym, creatine can also have positive effects on bone mineral density, reduce oxidative stress, and even boost memory. In short, creatine has something to offer nearly everyone.
In our muscle cells, we have reserves of creatine, and when we take creatine as a supplement, it fills up these reserves so they can be used when our bodies need them most. Every day, whether we supplement or not, our bodies use up these reserves of creatine, so when we supplement, they’re completely replenished so our body can utilize a full tank. Every day that we don’t take creatine, our reserves are less full, so it’s important we take creatine daily. Here are 5 reasons why:
1.) Creatine can help make us stronger
Several studies have shown that creatine supplementation results in strength gains. In a meta-analysis of 22 studies on creatine, researchers found that individuals who use it show an 8% increase in strength compared to those who don’t.
2.) Creatine can help our muscles grow bigger
Creatine makes our muscles look bigger, while actually making them bigger as well. First, creatine causes our muscle cells to store more water which causes our muscles to appear fuller and larger. We may notice the size increase a few days or weeks after starting creatine supplementation. The other way creatine can help our muscles grow is by simply helping us lift heavier weight at more volume. Over time, our muscles will get bigger from this increased intensity.
3.) Creatine can speed up recovery
Intense exercise causes our muscle fibers to tear and creates inflammation. Some research suggests that supplementing with creatine can reduce the cell damage and inflammation that occurs during intense training, thus speeding up recovery. The faster we can recover, the faster we can achieve our goals.
4.) Creatine may help strengthen our brain
While the bulk of our body’s creatine resides in its musculature, smaller amounts are also found in our brain. It takes a lot of energy to power our brains and, just like in our muscles, that energy transfer is carried out through ATP - an energy-carrying molecule found in the cells of all living things. Creatine has been found to play a major role in ATP levels in the brain, and one study found that higher creatine concentrations in the brain resulted in improved mental performance.
5.) Creatine is safe and affordable
After 35 years of testing on infants, athletes, and adults, creatine has been found to be completely safe, even after years of use. When taking the recommended dosage, it won’t damage our kidneys or liver, and won’t cause dehydration. The only issue we might have is nausea or diarrhea, but that often happens as a result of taking too much. Not only is creatine more effective than almost all other supplements, it’s also a whole lot cheaper, on the order of $13 for 114 servings, or 12-budget-friendly-cents a serving.
Creatine is in fact one of the most well-researched nutritional supplements on the market, and the Mayo Clinic states that when taken in appropriate doses, it’s likely safe to take up to five years. As long as we don’t take too much, it’s a safe supplement with few reported side effects. Given the plethora of options on the market today, a special formula in VEDGE™ Creatine+ includes not only the highest grade creatine monohydrate available, but also Peak02® - a trademarked ingredient with proven studies shown to increase strength, energy, and performance. Both creatine and Peak02® work together to enhance our training capacity, and PeakO2® helps to specifically improve oxygen utilization which can be helpful if taken prior to exercise. The pairing of these two ingredients can be a game changer for those striving to reach their goals on a daily basis.
TRY IT FOR YOURSELF!
Rawson ES, Volek JS. Effects of creatine supplementation and resistance training on muscle strength and weightlifting performance. J Strength Cond Res. 2003 Nov;17(4):822-31. doi: 10.1519/1533-4287(2003)017<0822:eocsar>2.0.co;2. PMID: 14636102
.Powers, Michael E. et al. “Creatine Supplementation Increases Total Body Water Without Altering Fluid Distribution.” Journal of athletic training vol. 38,1 (2003): 44-50.
Santos RV, Bassit RA, Caperuto EC, Costa Rosa LF. The effect of creatine supplementation upon inflammatory and muscle soreness markers after a 30km race. Life Sci. 2004 Sep 3;75(16):1917-24. doi: 10.1016/j.lfs.2003.11.036. PMID: 15306159.
Wyss M, Schulze A. Health implications of creatine: can oral creatine supplementation protect against neurological and atherosclerotic disease? Neuroscience. 2002;112(2):243-60. doi: 10.1016/s0306-4522(02)00088-x. PMID: 12044443.
Kreider RB, Melton C, Rasmussen CJ, Greenwood M, Lancaster S, Cantler EC, Milnor P, Almada AL. Long-term creatine supplementation does not significantly affect clinical markers of health in athletes. Mol Cell Biochem. 2003 Feb;244(1-2):95-104. PMID: 12701816.
By Vedge Nutrition
Commonly used by gym rats and fitness fanatics, creatine is undoubtedly the king of all nutritional supplements, and for the right reasons. It’s well-researched to support the body’s energy needs safely and effectively and has an extraordinary ability to help us exercise longer and harder while increasing our muscle gains. Additionally, as scientists continue to expand the research horizons, another noticeable effect of creatine has recently surfaced: cognitive support. As we add this to the list of benefits creatine provides, it can be very helpful to understand its precise effects on the brain.
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